A RETAILER selling healthy pet food has moved into a former supermarket to create the biggest store of its kind in the country.

Deborah Burrows, managing director of Healthy Pet Store, managed to finalise a deal on the site despite the country going into lowdown.

Her shop, specialising in frozen meals for cats and dogs, will open tomorrow, Saturday, in Totton.

The store – across the Salisbury Road Arcade from the previous store – will contain 30 freezers of freshly frozen raw meat recipes for pets.

Deborah said: “It was a massive challenge keeping the deal to take over the unit in sight. We had committed to the process many months before lockdown, but the Covid-19 crisis could have scuppered all our plans.

“But thanks to the landlord, property agents, and contractors, we have got everything back on track again.”

The new store will be the largest retailer of frozen fresh foods for meat-eating pets in the country by square footage. Freshly frozen raw meat recipes are a rapidly growing part of the pet food market.

Healthy Pet Store focuses on its own brand of food so it can have strict control over the 50 recipes it sells. It sends its food for delivery across Hampshire, Dorset and Wiltshire, and says some customers visit from as far as London and even Yorkshire.

The original store opened just over five years ago and currently sells around seven tonnes of frozen food each week, excluding ambient and dried categories, and that total is growing.

Deborah added: “People are really focused these days on providing healthy and nutritious food for their cats and dogs and understand the physical and mental benefits this can bring. We provide an easy, straight forward and convenient way to do this.”

“We are very careful with the ranges of products we stock to ensure companion animals are getting the very best food, and more, that they need for a healthy lifestyle.”

The current small store is closing as the 11-strong team complete the move into the new unit and open the doors to the public.